Christmas is notoriously not a time of bliss and joy like all of the songs tell us it is. While I would like to think we’ve started catching on as a society, the fact that the stores are already flooded with 8 foot Santa Clauses in October tells me otherwise. As the stores fill with decor and Christmas lists start emerging we can begin to feel that overwhelm of the chaos that is about to ensue. That credit card bill might start getting bigger, but it’s the season of giving so, guess that’s normal, right? Throw in the extra jam-packed schedules, Holiday bake-offs and forget about it… Christmas feels exhausting before it’s even begun. Wow, I’m starting to sound like a real Grinch. (I guess I can see why that dude had such a beef with Christmas.) Before we totally give up all hope on having the most wonderful time of the year this holiday season, let’s talk about 5 ways we can pre-prep, and declutter in order to create the space for the kind of joy we all crave.
Filter through incoming decor
If you’re anything like most families, there is a good chance you’ve got some decor on hand for Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. If so, a great way to stay ahead of the chaos of Christmas is to slowly declutter items from your decor collections.
As you bust open each Rubbermade tote containing all your stored away decor, take the time to note which things don’t make you feel all holly jolly inside. Throw out broken items, and drop off donations for the ones you’re no longer using.
Doing a pre-Christmas holiday decor declutter takes very little effort since you’re already in the process of taking out and handling these items. You may have to add an extra trip to drop off donations, but maybe you could treat yourself to a cup of cocoa for a job well done!
Edit your wardrobe
Another thing you’re probably already shuffling through right now is your closet. Whether or not you have a fall and summer capsule wardrobe, there’s a good chance you’re doing a little shifting of outfits. The change of seasons is always a great time to revaluate your wardrobe.
As you put away summer clothes, make note of the things that never got worn, despite your best intentions and add them to the donate pile. If you’re pulling out a fall or winter capsule wardrobe pay attention the items that you touch and feel nothing for. Imagine you are buying these things for the first time and ask yourself which items you wouldn’t purchase right now. If you come across something you know you wouldn’t actively seek out to wear, add it to the declutter pile.
Making our wardrobes simpler might not seem like a task that’s totally aligned with Christmas time, but I promise, when you have a bake sale to get to, a pageant to clap at, and a party to attend, you’ll be thankful you have already filtered through the no-go outfits so you can easily access the good stuff.
Clear out unfinished projects
OK, the clock is ticking and it’s almost midnight. AKA the ball is going to be dropping on a New Year soon and if you’re still holding onto unfinished projects from the previous year, it’s officially time to let go. It’s all good, no one is going to judge you. We are all prepping up to be the best version of ourselves into the new year which means letting go of the dead weight from years past.
No, I’m not saying chucking the quilt you spend 9 months stitching together. Instead, do yourself a favor and let yourself off the hook for the sweaters that still don’t have all their buttons, the living room chair you swore you were going to reupholster, or even those pants that are 2 sizes too small.
It’s OK, you’re not a failure, you simply know what is no longer working. Be willing to let it all go so you can go into the holiday season with a clean slate and enter the New Year as a new you!
Make Santa Space with your kids
If you are a parent, one of the best ways you can save your sanity is to do a pre-Christmas toy declutter with your kids. I’m sure grandparents are already winding up to buy out the toy stores. (If this drives you crazy, you’re going to want to click here.) Before your home is taken over by Christmas morning clutter, go through the process of eliminating some of what you currently have.
Christmas Toy Declutter Script:
“I see you have 5 things on your Christmas list!! Remember, we have to make sure Santa has room to fit all of this back in! How about we find 5 toys that you don’t play with as much anymore and we can donate them to other kids. That way we get to make another child happy, and Santa has space to bring your new toys!“
Feel free to put your own twist on this, but this basic script is gold when it comes to explaining to your kiddos why the pre-Christmas toy declutter is necessary and not something to be afraid of.
Pre-plan your input
As always, one of the best ways to avoid clutter pile ups is to get more intentional about what is coming in. This is especially important at the holiday season when we are being bombarded by marketers trying to get us to buy everything from egg nog to time shares.
What items are going to enhance your Christmas, and what items are just going to be unnecessary clutter? Taking the time to decide what you won’t be spending your money on can be a great way to not only stick to your budget, but to avoid clutter from taking over your home. No more Christmas burnout in this house. No, thank you!
If you are notorious for over-spending all year long (that goes double at Christmas time), check out my Shopping Rehab course that is designed to help you create balance with spending.